Ghetto Tax

Money Mart. "Rent-to-Own." Higher Insurance Premiums. Worse Interest Rates. These are just a few of the ways that the poor get to pay MORE for the same goods and services that the middle class can obtain at lower prices.

The New York Times is reporting on a recent study performed in the United States showing that "poor urban residents frequently pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars a year in extra costs for everyday necessities."

I have suggested before that there are various flaws in capitalism, but this is totally fucked up. In general, there is not as much money to be made in poor neighborhoods, so the businesses that do open up there charge a huge premium for the risk they are taking.

There used to be people who opened businesses in these neighborhoods because they lived there. There used to be businesses that weren't myopically focussed on seizing a good return for shareholders. That is no longer true. Even in Toronto, there have been articles in the Toronto Star about the migration of banks out of poorer neighborhoods. If you can't open a bank account near your house and you don't drive a car, chances are you're going to have trouble getting your finances in order. If there's no grocery store near you, your going to be more tempted to buy that $18 box of cereal at 7-11.

It should be easier to get by if you are poor not harder. Investors need to start investing there money in things they can be proud of that might return 8% a year instead of 11%, rather than giving their money to slimy creeps like the folks at money mart.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"They're the reverse of Robin Hood, it's too common
Stealin' from the poor for the rich, so we call it Hood Robbin'"
--Dan Havana

7:43 p.m.  
Blogger justin said...

I didn't read TFA, but seems like there's a difference (of access) between inner city poor, which have no access to big box retailers, and folks who live in the rings around cities, who may. Except there's more bus services downtown... hm. There's a lot of factors.

Um, in conclusion: Stronger neighborhood associations!

5:53 p.m.  

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